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Squirrels stealing my nuts (1) Fri, May 09, 2008
There are these squirrels living in the trees in my backyard, and they act like they're committing a crime by eating some of the 70 billion acorns scattered all over the god-forsaken place. 

[Image: squirrels.png]

I wish I could send a message to these little guys and say, "Hey, you don't have to hide in the trees, rummage through rocks, or scurry around in the leaves.  You can take as many friggin acorns as you want.  There are 70 billion of them." #nature

Old people in my way Fri, May 09, 2008
I'm an ageist.  I discriminate based on age.  Everybody does.  Old people and their AARP.  Young people and their loud music.  Stereotypes wouldn't exist if they weren't true. 

I got my blood tested on Tuesday.  In order to make it to work on time, I showed up at the blood test center as soon as it opened, which was 7am.  To my surprise, there was already a line of 10 people ahead of me, and it was exactly 7am.  Guess who these people were?  Old people.  There was the old guy with his young daughter.  There was the old guy with big sideburns like he still thought it was 1972.  There was the old guy in the leisure suit with the top unzipped and nothing underneath (I wish I was kidding about that, but I'm not).  No less than 75% of the room was old people.  Now I understand that old people have health problems, and the best way to cure health problems is bloodletting (that's still all the rage, right?).  All I'm trying to say is this:  Old people, you have nothing else to do.  No schedule.  No obligations.  No nothing.  So would it be possible for you to stay out of my way?  I understand you wake up before dawn because that's what old people do.  I understand you want to get your doctor stuff out of the way to free up your schedule.  I understand you don't want to wait in line, so you try to do things first thing in the morning.  But guess what?  You're interfering with the way the world works.  The world has a job.  The world has a schedule.  The world pays for your social security and Medicare benefits.  So let's get this straight:  We agree to turn our heads when you accidentally think the gas pedal is the brake, and you get your blood tested sometime around 10:30.  Thanks. #psychology

Where to lay down Fri, May 09, 2008
If you're a cat (which you're not because cats can't use computers or the internet or even read), you have two options in life: 

  1. Lay down on an object such as a towel, a blanket, a napkin, a shirt, or a pillow.
  2. Lay down in a sunny spot.
In this case, Dilbert chose the second option, in the middle of the kitchen floor, with Wendy in the background doing dishes.  It was a tough choice. #nature

California cancer chemicals Fri, May 09, 2008
I've always wondered what these warning labels meant: 
"WARNING: This product contains a chemical known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm."
Since this is on sooo many everyday products, is it something I should be worried about?  Why does only California know about it?  Why doesn't any other state know?  If it was a legitimate issue, wouldn't the product be outlawed?  Maybe Californians are extra cautious about cancer? 

It turns out it has something to do with a law passed in California in 1986 called the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, or Proposition 65.  This law requires the state to annually update a list of 700+ chemicals that are known to cause health problems.  A group of scientists and industry experts determines which chemicals are added and occasionally removed from the list.  The general qualification for a chemical that causes cancer is that if 100,000 people are exposed to it for 70 years, more than one person would get cancer.  Whether that's a fair qualification or not, I have no idea. 

In my "research" for this post, two things stood out to me:  (1) This information was surprisingly hard to find.  I would think it would be in everyone's best interest for someone to make an easy-to-find, easy-to-understand website with simple yet thorough information about a warning label that shows up on billions of products around the country.  (2) There's no answer as to why California is the only state that created such a list, or why the federal government hasn't adopted a similar list.  This leaves me with two possible conclusions.  Either California is full of extremely smart people who know a lot of stuff about a lot of things and have decided that certain chemicals can cause certain health problems in certain doses and certain situations, or exactly the opposite; i.e. California is full of fruits and nuts.  I'm sure both conclusions are true, but the second one doesn't have much effect on me getting cancer. #products